Thinking of tackling the writing of safety manuals and programs for your ISNetworld® compliance yourself? Most companies we deal with prefer to outsource the creation and maintenance of safety manuals to professional safety consultants, due to the time it takes. But, it is not an impossible task if you have a staff member with the time and patience to tackle it.
If you do decide to try to do this yourself, here are some tips:
- Start with a good template. There are resources for sample safety plans that you can download free of charge on OSHA's website. These will need to customized to your operational requirements but can provide a good starting point and save you a lot of time. University of South Florida offers a Safety Writer tool that you can use to create a downloadable safety program.
- Make sure your safety manual covers both ISNetworld® and OSHA requirements. If you use one of the OSHA templates, your OSHA requirements will be taken care of and you only need to check for ISNetworld® requirements.
- Get familiar with regulatory requirements that apply to your operations. If you can't find a template for a program that ISNetworld® requires, you will need to write your own manual. This is where most people decide it is time to bring in a professional, as it can be time consuming to research the rules and develop a plan from scratch.
- Include the page number where a standard is listed in the safety manual when you answer questions in ISNetworld®. Make it easy for the reviewer to find what she is looking for.
- Get help if you need it. If you are confused about a requirement, call ISNetworld® to ask for clarification. Although they won't write the safety manual for you, they can give you the information you need to get started. If the process becomes overwhelming, hire a professional safety consultant to write your safety programs for you. A competent safety professional familiar with ISNetworld® will know exactly what they are looking for and be able to submit compliant plans on your behalf, leaving you able to focus on running your business.